Tag Archives: yarn

Pigeon Toes

Santa was good to me this year and brought me a lovely new point and click camera.

As my big Canon is back from being repaired, but is hiding somewhere in the sewing room, it is very lovely to have a new camera to quickly snap some pictures of outstanding makes from last year.

2016 turned out to be the year I became the patron saint of unselfish sewing and knitting, although, to be honest, I didn’t make very much at all.  14 finished items, 13 of them made it to the blog, only 3 of the blogged items were for me, and only 1 of those is still in the wardrobe.  That’s the Lemongrass sweater.  I just love this sweater so very much!  Cosy, easy to wear, makes you look like you’ve made an effort even when you haven’t!

The Burda sweater has been donated as I just couldn’t get to grips with the scarf neck and even though that was stitched in place I still felt very exposed in anything other than an upright position.

The Burda trousers are donated to Ma.  I’m going to alter them for her as they’re a much better style and fabric for her than me.

The main focus of the year has been socks.  And I’ve another pair to share with you today.

Same old, same old pattern, but just a lovely combination of colours in the stripes.

Very subdued by Hubby’s standards.  Absolutely perfect by mine!  I may have to match that pale grey/blue colour for a sweater for me.  It’s sublime!

Now, if I could just get the wee monkeys to stand still for some photos, I could show you that occasionally I knit something other than socks!

Project details

Pattern:                             Regia 4 ply sock pattern

Pattern cost:                     Free

Yarn:                                 Sirdar Heart & Sole

Colourway:                      Pigeon Toes

Purchased at:                  Black Sheep Wools

Yarn cost:                         £4.99


Knitting

Refurbishments continue apace. Being badly let down at the last minute by a plasterer turned into a blessing because the new guy we found is a gem.  He came, he plastered, he hung coving, he went.  He didn’t talk me into a coma, which has been my previous experience of plasterers. Already the house feels more like our home.

At 9am on Monday the decorator arrives.  I have boxes of wallpaper and tins of paint up the wazoo.  I’m starting to feel more than a twinge of excitement.

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I hadn’t realised how much I would miss being able to sew.  At the moment I walk into the room and touch the boxes and twitch to open them and unpack.  The truth is I don’t exactly know what is actually in the boxes.  There are books and patterns and fabrics and notions that have been packed away for the best part of 18 months.  There are supplies for knitting, dressmaking, crafts and embroidery.

Honestly….it’s going to be like a satellite branch of Hobbycraft with a more than a little John Lewis thrown in!

I can’t wait.

But in the meantime the knitting is keeping me sane.

malabrigo_1I wound this beautiful Malabrigo Rios worsted a little while ago, whilst the sun was still shining, but the yarn is perfect for the chill that has settled in these parts.

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I’m knitting the Worsted Boxy sweater from Joji Locatelli.

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You’ll recall her lovely Lemongrass sweater…this is another beautifully written pattern.

Admittedly, there are acres of stocking stitch to work, but this is mindless TV knitting at it’s absolute finest. The Malabrigo makes a wonderfully drapey fabric that will work beautifully with this style, and there is a cute short row shaping at the shoulders that adds a nice detail.

The back is already completed and I’m almost half way up the front.  I can’t wait to have this finished.  It the kind of easy to wear, cosy sweater that I need in my life at the moment.

Whilst I was winding the Malabrigo, I also took the opportunity to wind some wool that had been a gift from my friend Christian last Christmas.

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These beauties are Buachaille by Kate Davies.  I’ve long admired Kate. She is inspirational in how she turned a major illness that would have floored a lesser woman into a catalyst for a new and rewarding life and business.  Her designs are so beautiful and her dedication to Scottish wool and knitterly heritage is exciting to me.

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That said, I’ve not knitted one of her designs yet, which is pretty shabby on my part. These guys are destined to be The Goats of Inversnaid.

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Goats!  On a hat and gauntlets!  What’s not to love?  My friends have the best taste and know me so very well.

So that’s keeping me busy.  I’ve also a little Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran awaiting turning into a quick hat.  All my hats and scarves are currently still in boxes, and I think I may have mentioned that the weather has turned here.  Whilst The Goats will be lovely, they’ll take me a wee while to make and the weather waits for no woman.

The wee man has requested a blue sweater with red stripes, so a quick trip was made to Black Sheep Wools this week for supplies.  I’m not turning my nose up at the kids asking for things to be made for them.

Add in the ball of sock yarn that the Hubby located last week and I think I’m covered until the boxes start being unpacked!

My cameras are currently in the shop as I’ve been having sensor problems with one and managed to bend the prongs on the card reader with another.  But as soon as they’re back I’ve got a cardigan that I made for Miss Button to share and yet another pair of socks that I’d completely forgotten that I’d knitted for the Mr.

Right…the babes are off to bed, there’s a gin and tonic with my name on it waiting to be poured, and The Hubby has a movie all lined up.   There’s also a little more acreage of stocking stitch to be knitted. 😉


Don’t Dilly Dally on the Way!

This is the last pair of socks that I knitted for The Hubby.

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When I say “last” I mean “most recently completed” not “the final pair”.

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Amazingly another ball of sock yarn appeared just as I was knitting the toe of the second sock of this pair.

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Hubby had found it in a box he was unpacking.  I’m feeling the fates conspiring with him to fill the world with hand knitted striped socks.

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I, on the other hand (or foot), have other knitterly plans!

Project details

Pattern:                             Regia 4 ply sock pattern

Pattern cost:                     Free

Yarn:                                 Sirdar Heart & Sole

Colourway:                      Dilly Dally (051)

Purchased at:                  Black Sheep Wools

Yarn cost:                         £4.99

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Rum Paradise Socks

Ooof!  I had no intention of falling off the edge of the world for another month. There’s a whole lot of life happening here at the moment.

I’ve also been busy getting quotes for all the trades that we need in to help us bring this house to life and make it a home, and happily, the first of those starts work next week.  I’m hopeful that by Christmas I’ll have a big chunk of decorating done and will be in a position to start setting up the sewing room.

Until then, everything is still in boxes so my creativity is limited to knitting. I even had to borrow needle and thread to sew name labels in the kids new uniforms!

And you won’t be surprised to learn that I’ve been knitting socks!

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Wildly coloured, fabulously striped socks!

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They are delightfully gaudy, and very cheery on some of the rainy days we’ve had recently.

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Basically everything The Husband loves in a hand knitted sock.

Project details

Pattern:                             Regia 4 ply sock pattern

Pattern cost:                     Free

Yarn:                                 West Yorkshire Spinners Signature 4ply Cocktail Range 

Colourway:                      Rum Paradise

Yarn cost:                         £7.20

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Fruit pastille socks

If you’re the lady we met on the train to Birmingham, and you’re here to check in on the socks I started, I’m afraid you’ll be disappointed today.

Sock knitting has been slowed down by the siren song of an aran weight cardigan for Button, that now only needs….you guessed it….buttons!

And swatching to find a yarn to make up a pattern that calls for Quince & Co…which would need importing and is also way beyond my budget.

But…I do have another, different pair of socks to share with you.

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These have been done for a while and the husband is keen for me to get them photographed so he can have them back to wear.

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I swear I don’t believe the weather will ever be anything else but grey here. The sun broke through for about 30 seconds, but by the time I’d set up the socks and the camera the heavens had opened again. So I’m sucking it up and sharing somewhat gloomy photos.

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But even gloomy photos of socks can be cheery on the greyest of days.  Especially when they bring to mind a roll of fruit pastille sweeties.

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And now I’ve shared I can go back to knitting the anticipated, and very, very jolly socks that I started on the train to Birmingham.

Project details

Yarn:                             Debbie Bliss Realto Sock

Colour:                          2 – Roskilde

Purchased from:          Fabrix, Lancaster

Cost:                               £9.95

Needles:                        2.75mm

Size:                               64 stitch cast on


The socks of incredible gaudiness

As the weather isn’t playing ball for pictures of Miss Button in her new mummy-made garments, I took advantage of the grey skies to tone down the incredible gaudiness of these socks.

It worked!  In this picture they look positively subdued!

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This is what they really look like.

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That pink makes your eyes water in bright light!

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We recently had an interesting conversation with Anne at our LYS, & Sew What, about men and colourful socks.  Her experience is that younger men prefer a more sober sock, sticking with plain or only slightly variegated yarns, whilst more mature men love the more colourful, wildly striped yarns.

The husband bucks this trend as he’s hardly an older chap but the more bold the colour combination of the yarn, the more it appeals to him.

Hence, these sunglasses-inducing lovelies.

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There is a small part of me that’s convinced he chooses such combinations as he knows I’ll be knitting as fast as my fingers allow, just to get them off the needles and onto his feet. But he’s such a sweetheart, so that couldn’t possible be the case.

Could it?


Pairfect socks

 

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You might think that the title of this post slipped by the spellchecker, but no!  These latest socks are knitted in Regia Pairfect yarn, which was a Christmas gift from my lovely friend Linda.

She knows what I like!

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After the travesty that was the poor Herriot Socks, these were an absolute joy to knit. The yarn is robust but not harsh and a good stripe always makes me knit faster.

“Just one more stripe!”

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The yarn is actually designed to give perfectly matched stripes on toe up sock patterns, but these are my trusty Regia sock pattern, which is top down.  I just knitted some blue for the cuff, pulled the yarn through until I hit the stripes, rejoined and knit until I came back to the blue.  There were a couple of more ends to stitch in at the end, but I’m happy to do that.

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You could of course knit these top down and have striped feet, but The Hubby’s preference was for stripy legs and I was happy to oblige.

Although I have another pair of socks on the needles at the moment (of course), I promise the next finished project will be something different.


Good socks gone bad!

Herriot socks-1

So! I recently finished two pairs of socks for the Hubby knitted from blue and plum coloured Juniper Moon Herriot Fine.  I don’t mind admitting that I’ve never been so glad to see the back of a project as I was these.

The yarn, as you’d guess from the name, is a lightweight fingering.  It’s also fluffy. And I didn’t like the plum colour at all! It’s fair to say that I didn’t enjoy one single stitch of these socks.

Except perhaps for the last stitch of the grafting of the toes.  I definitely enjoyed that one!

But he was happy and that’s why I knit him socks.  And to be fair to the yarn, the problems I had with it were down to personal preference.  It’s beautifully spun, the colours are soft and heathery, and, I’m told, they are supremely comfortable to wear. The skeins are generous at 461 yards/100g.

It’s also a hand wash alpaca blend.

You know what’s coming don’t you.

Herriot socks-2

Yep….hand wash alpaca blends do not take kindly to the hand wash programme in your washing machine.

Ooooops!

Which isn’t exactly what I said when I took them out of said machine!

I’m not entirely sure why the plum shrank more than the blue.  Possibly to do with the dye?!

Herriot socks-3

Total user error.  Thankfully they are just about still wearable!  And there are more pairs to come.  Just not in the Herriot yarn 😉


Overabundance!

Last weekend we finally found time for a little outing to Hebden Bridge to take the hexie quilt to The Quilt Cabin to be long arm quilted.  It’s my first time using a professional long arm quilter so I’ll report back on that in due course.  It was also our first visit to Hebden Bridge.

I wasn’t prepared for just how pretty HB is.  It’s a enchanting former mill town full of independent shops, quirky cafes and restaurants, and charming little streets.  A river runs through the centre of the town and as the day was overcast but dry we spent a happy few hours wandering in and out of the shops and taking a hearty and warming lunch at The Blitz 1940’s themed tea room.  Hubby had oxtail stew, I had a steak pie…both were delicious.  The meal was rounded off with a bowl of jam roly-poly and two spoons. Heavenly on a chill October afternoon.  And the staff are simply delightful.

Image courtesy of Feathegills Emporium, Hebden Bridge

Image courtesy of Feathegills Emporium, Hebden Bridge

On our meanderings we stumbled across Ribbon Circus yarn and sewing shop. Whilst I chatted happily with the owner and some of the other knitterly customers, Hubby prowled the shop with a sharp eye and the next thing I knew four new lots of sock yarn were being rung up on the till.  The man is a demon!

This is what we came home with:

Sirdar Heart & Sole in “Happy Camper”

This is a new yarn for me so I’m quite intrigued to give it a go and see how it wears. One of the other customers at Ribbon Circus was knitting another colourway of this and it stripes up beautifully.  If she hadn’t got the sock out we’d have escaped without these two purchases.  Damn you, lovely knitting lady!

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Sirdar Heart & Sole in “Find Your Sea Legs”

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Juniper Moon Farm Herriot Fine in “Lakeville”

Another new to me yarn and the one I’m most looking forward to knitting. Whisper soft alpaca with the gentlest of halos and 25% polyamide for strength.  Saturated, heathered colours.  What’s not to love?  I think these will be a joy to knit as well as wear!

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Juniper Moon Farm Herriot Fine in “Deep Plum Passion”

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With such an overabundance of lovely sock yarn, not to mention projects for Button and Me, I’m really rather pleased that I’m already on the second of the Tannat socks.

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Abundance

I finally finished knitting the husband’s Longfellow cardigan and handed it over to my friend Liz today for seaming.

If you ever wonder if you love someone, knit them a cardigan in 4ply.  If you finish it and can still look them in the eye, then they’re a keeper!

Knowing that I was on the home straight with that particular project I’ve recently spent some happy time online selecting my next projects and patterns.  Whilst Liz and I chatted today I borrowed her swift and ball-winder (mine are in storage) and spent a happy hour converting skeins  into jolly cakes of yarn ready and waiting to hit the needles.

Sadly it’s impossible to get a picture of them as it’s so heavily grey outside today.  A typically northern day, but I’m just glad it’s not raining!

Now, back to the knitting. In no particular order of what will be cast on first we have:

Fleur Bleue by Christal LK designs

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This will be knitted in the leftovers Drops Alpaca from Hubby’s cardigan.

drops alpaca navy

I do love my girl in a navy cardigan!

Lemongrass by Joji Locatelli

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I’ve been looking for something cosy to pull on over a tee or shirt for school runs and park date and this really fits the bill.  I love a good cable as you know and I’m enamoured with the unusual shaping of it.

I’ll admit it’s a bit of a risk shapewise…I’m not sure it will work for me.  But, if it doesn’t, I’ll frog the yarn and reknit it into something more conventional.

Speaking of the yarn, I’ll be knitting Lemongrass in this gorgeous Malabrigo Merino Worsted Azul Bolita.

Malabrigo Azul Bolita

The colour has slightly more purple in it than I’d anticipated online, but the colour is so saturated and luscious that I can’t be disappointed with it.  And the texture of the wool is sublime….slubby and soft and lofty.

It leaks colour like mad, so I’ll have blue hands whilst knitting it, but this is to be expected with kettle dyed yarn. It’s a price I’m very willing to pay!

And last but not least….

Socks by Regia

Winter is coming.

(GOTs pun entirely intended)

Recently over coffee Liz was knitting the most perfect pair of socks.  I loved the colour. I loved the feel of yarn.  Considering imitation to be the sincerest form of flattery, I quizzed her about the yarn and ordered a skein the same day.

It’s Manos del Uruguay Alegria in Tannat (A6729) and it is really quite lovely.

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Hub’s is thrilled!  He has quite bold taste in socks.

So…that should keep me in stitches for some time to come.  And who are we kidding…you know those socks will be cast on tonight! 😉